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Get started with Node-RED


Node-RED is a low-code programming environment for event-driven applications. It uses flow-based programming to let you draw a visual representation of how messages should flow through the application.

Node-RED embodies a “low code” style of application development, where developers can quickly create meaningful applications without having to write reams of code. Three key benefits of low-code application development, all of which are seen first-hand with Node-RED, are:

  • It reduces the time taken to create a working application. The real value can be realized much quicker than with traditional development models.

  • It is accessible to a wide range of developers and non-developers alike. Above all else, low code development is one of the most important benefits of Node-RED. Anyone who understands a domain-specific problem, such as a business analyst, a linguist, or a building engineer, will know the discrete steps needed to solve it. Node-RED gives them the tools to express those steps within a flow, and build the solution for themselves.

  • The visual nature helps users to see their application. “Show, don’t tell” is a powerful concept. Node-RED is often used to demo capabilities of APIs, such as the Watson cognitive services. It’s so effective because the visualization of your application logic shows the art of the possible without having to explain every semi-colon, bracket and brace. Not everyone thinks in lines of code; the visual representation of application logic is much more relatable.

Skill level

The skill level of this learning path is for a beginner.

Estimated time to complete

It will take you approximately 1.5 hours to complete this entire learning path.